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Jazz vet Thabo Sefolosha says there’s a ‘bit of nervousness’ in their Game 1 loss to Rockets

Thabo Sefolosha, Jazz, Rockets

The Utah Jazz were clobbered by the Houston Rockets in Game 1 of their first-round series on Sunday, and veteran guard Thabo Sefolosha believes they weren’t able to play the way they wanted to because of nervousness.

Sefolosha said the Jazz had playoff jitters all over them in Game 1, but he added that that’s no longer going to be the case in Game 2.

“We can tell there was a little bit of nervousness from it being Game 1 of the playoffs,” Thabo Sefolosha said. “We’ve still got a young group, so some of it is normal. It’s behind us now, and we can just focus on being who we are, playing our brand of basketball.”

It’s not like the Jazz weren’t in the same situation last season. In fact, they were also the fifth seed last year, but they managed to pull off an upset by beating the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first round. They basically have the same players from last year, so nervousness should have never been a factor.

However, they are facing the team that eliminated them from the playoffs last year. And instead of showing the Rockets that they want to get even, Utah had very little resistance against Houston’s offense.

The Jazz were still within striking distance heading into the fourth quarter of Game 1. They were only down 83-71 and had plenty of time to make a run, but the Rockets took their hearts and outscored them 39-19 in the final 12 minutes.

Utah will have the opportunity to bounce back in Game 2 on Wednesday.